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NFL Draft

New England Patriots Top 30 Visit: Oregon DL Brandon Dorlus



Oregon defensive end Brandon Dorlus (3) smiles on the sidelines during the second half of an NCAA college football game against Utah Saturday, Oct. 28, 2023, in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

Every NFL franchise is allowed to invite up to 30 draft prospects to visit their facilities and meet with the members of the organization before the NFL Draft. These selections range from first-round targets to players who might be available as undrafted free agents. As news about the New England Patriots Top 30 visits surface, Patriots Football Now will highlight each of the visitors. Today’s feature is Oregon defensive lineman Brandon Dorlus.

College Career

Brandon Dorlus was a three-star prospect in 247 Sports composite rankings coming out of Deerfield Beach High School in Deerfield Beach, Fla. He ranked as the No. 835 overall player, No. 55 strong-side defensive end, and No. 109 player from Florida in the Class of 2019. Fellow 2024 NFL Draft prospect Michael Pratt (QB, Tulane) also attended Deerfield Beach High School, but only for his senior season, the year after Dorlus had graduated.

Dorlus originally committed to Virginia Tech before his senior season. However, he decommited in December of that year and opted to sign with Oregon.

The true freshman appeared in nine games in 2019 but saw limited snaps on defense. He recorded five tackles, including two for a loss. The following season was cut short due to COVID, but Dorlus played in all seven of the Ducks games. Dorlus became a full-time player, jumping from 16 snaps per game as a freshman to 37 as a sophomore. He finished with 14 tackles.

Over the next three seasons, Dorlus became one of the most productive defensive linemen in college football. He received first-team All-Pac-12 honors twice. Over those three seasons, Dorlus played in 40 games. He amassed 89 tackles (23 TFL) and 10.0 sacks. He added 13 passes defended, including nine in 2023.

Pro Football Focus gave Dorlus a grade of 76.9 for 2023. It was his first season with grades above 73.0 for run defense, pass rush, and tackling. Dorlus’ tackling grade had suffered the previous few seasons due to missed tackles.

NFL Draft

Brandon Dorlus has a lot of attributes that excite scouts. Perhaps chief among these is his versatility across the defensive line. Dorlus can line up anywhere along the front, making him a potential fit for any NFL team.

Dorlus measured 6-foot-3 and weighed 283 pounds at the NFL Combine. He likely plays at a higher weight and looks like he has plenty of room to add bulk. He worked out with the defensive tackles instead of the ends. This showcased his speed, relative to the group, as he ran a 4.85 in the 40-yard dash.

It could also be argued that Dorlus’ versatility is a weakness in terms of his draft stock. He is on the small side for a defensive tackle, but on the slow side for a defensive end. But his film shows him as being a consistently disruptive player on the field, something all teams could use.

The New England Patriots need some depth at defensive end, with only Keion White and Deatrich Wise Jr. appearing to be roster locks. Defensive tackles Christian Barmore, Devon Godchaux, and Armon Watts are all scheduled to hit free agency in 2025. So there is a need to add depth to the defensive line. If Dorlus is still on the board when the Patriots select in Round 4, he would be a solid fit. Will he last that long? Or would New England be willing to draft defense in the first three rounds? The answer is coming soon.

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